WordPress was launched as a content management system for bloggers 15 years ago. Now, it caters to huge organizations that have much more complex websites than a simple blog. This has given way to career paths with lucrative and sustainable WordPress job opportunities.
If you’ve given thought to start a career in WordPress, then you should definitely read this article. In this article, I will take you through the top WordPress jobs and tell you where you can find them.
Becoming a WordPress developer is hard work. It takes up a lot of time but it’s worth the effort. If you have previously looked for an “easy guide to becoming a WordPress developer”, you have done nothing but wasted your time.
Simply being a WordPress developer is not enough, you have to be one of the best in the business to ensure a long lasting career in WordPress. Also, if you’re under the impression that installing WordPress, going through tutorials and editing themes can make you a developer, you’re wrong. You may end up knowing more than an average WordPress user, but WordPress developers have broader boundaries.
Why You Should Work as a WordPress Developer
WordPress is not getting any less popular and with the rise of websites made on WordPress, the demand for top WordPress developers is on the rise as well. People are willing to pay huge fees for good WordPress developers who can offer innovation and value to their projects.
Being a top WordPress developer means you get projects that people in the WordPress community know about. When you have completed the project, you get will get credit for it, which will increase your credibility and authority within the community as a WordPress developer.
As you have more influence in the WordPress community, you will be able to contribute your expertise towards WordPress itself. You can help shape the future of WordPress through your knowledge and experience.
How Can You Become a WordPress Developer?
Read the Right Material
The reading material that you find on WordPress on the internet is massive. You have to identify and distinguish between authentic reading material and the unreliable one. The safest option for you is to start with WordPress Codex.
WordPress Codex is a community-driven repository of WordPress information. You start off with getting a hands-on experience of the WordPress interface and using the backend panel from the users’ perspective.
You will also find detailed information on WordPress theme development and writing a plugin.
To become a top WordPress developer, limiting yourself to one kind of reading material is not enough. There are many books on WordPress that you will find on the internet and in different bookstores.
Don’t shy away from reading a basic WordPress book like “WordPress for dummies”. You might find it too easy but there is a high chance that your client might have read it. It is always good to have customer’s point of view.
Finally, discover blogs that regularly write on WordPress. One of the biggest benefits WordPress users have is the information that is easily available on these blogs. It is completely free and very easy to understand. Some great WordPress blogs are:
- WP Tuts+
- Understand WordPress
Since you are looking to make a career as a WordPress developer, you need to have a deep understanding of the technology. The downside of reading WordPress blogs is that information gets quickly outdated.
If you are already a programmer and are familiar with PHP/MySQL, you can skip this section. If you’re not, you must start learning.
You can begin with understanding PHP/MySQL and their best practices. There is a high chance that if you have learned it before, those practices might be outdated today. There are a lot of WordPress courses available online. You can start by exploring Lynda.com and Udemy.
Next, you should understand the coding behind WordPress. It is very important to have extensive knowledge of how WordPress is structured. You can start by digging deep into the codebase on Tract and Xref.
Another great source of learning is by following the discussions at make.wordpress.org. You should keep tabs on the discussion on plugins, themes, and core.
What Can You Do as a WordPress Developer?
As a WordPress developer, you can decide to work on your own projects or take on projects from different clients. Either way, you will have to put a lot of efforts and spend a lot of time working on WordPress to gain extensive experience.
Taking on clients may give you the opportunity to make the most money. However, it requires a high level of commitment to satisfy your client. Most of the times and they are not happy with your work and you will have to do it all over again. You will have to patient and tolerant if you want to work for clients.
As you work on WordPress, you will start to identify different needs within WordPress. As a developer, you can fill those needs yourself by developing plugins. You can write a plugin that serves a purpose that has not been served before. Or you can write a better version of a plugin that already exists. You can release the plugin for free or paid. The best course of action is to release it for free at first, gather feedback, make it even better and when it’s popular, release a pro version with more features.
You can also develop themes that you can use yourself or release it to the community for free or paid.
WordPress designers are less technical than WordPress developers. That does not mean that they are alien to the development side. To become a top WordPress designer, you must have good knowledge about coding and the structure behind WordPress.
A designer is more concerned with the aesthetics of a website. Designers should have a good sense of color combination, fonts, and styling. They should know what colors and fonts are appropriate for a specific industry or niche. They should also be able to understand the placement of widgets, menus, and navigation.
As a designer, your job would be to make a website easier on the eye for the visitors. For that, you will have to play with the fonts, colors, placements, navigation and other design elements of a website.
Apart from website designing, another big opportunity for WordPress designers is theme design. Every WordPress user either uses free themes from the WordPress repository or premium third-party themes. If you can develop and design a top WordPress theme, you are in for some good business.
There are some big WordPress theme providers like Themeisle and Elegant Themes who are always looking for talented WordPress designers to develop and design high functioning themes for them.
How Can You Become a WordPress Designer?
Since the job is related to website design, it wouldn’t hurt to learn Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Illustrator. These programs are not that difficult to use but it takes time and effort to learn all the functionalities.
However, to stay ahead, you should be familiar with the rest of the languages.
Before I forget to mention, learn about SEO. One of the major aspects that makes a theme desirable is its SEO functionality. Start learning what makes a theme SEO-friendly and try to incorporate that into your theme.
Also, while designing your website, you should know what aspects of a website Google favors. It will help you rank your website higher in the search engine.
Becoming a writer is more about passion than skills. You can have all the WordPress knowledge about designing and developing but if you don’t have the passion for writing, your content will be lifeless.
The combination of being a WordPress developer and a writer is better than anything else in the WordPress community. There are a lot of resources where people can find WordPress information but there is still room for improvement.
As a WordPress writer, you can start your own blog like I did. You can write on various WordPress topics like WordPress speed, WordPress SEO, and WordPress development. Once your blog starts getting traffic, you can start earning through ads and promotional posts.
Apart from that, you can start writing for other blogs. This will save you from all the cost of setting up your own blog. There are many big WordPress blogs that are looking to hire writers with deep knowledge and excellent writing skills.
How Can You Become a WordPress Writer?
Writing is an acquired art that requires training and skill development. Passion alone is not enough to become a successful writer, you should get a grasp on the technicalities that make a good writer.
You can enroll in online writing courses on Lynda that can teach you how to structure your article and effectively convey your message to your audience. There are many other online courses, both free and paid, that can help you develop the skill for writing.
Since you are planning to become a WordPress writer, you must have a deep understanding of WordPress. Or at least deeper than your audience. If you have decided to write on WordPress development, then you should dive into the coding and the programming languages that run WordPress.
Teaching is a respected profession around the world. Once you have acquired all the WordPress information, the noblest thing to do with it is to impart it to the WordPress community.
You can start a podcast where you can conduct WordPress sessions and teach your audience regarding WordPress development, design, and other aspects. You can start free or even paid if you think your knowledge and style is something people would be willing to pay for.
How Can You Become a WordPress Teacher?
You can learn to teach only by experiencing it. You will only get better with experience. However, if you want inspiration, you can look up online courses that are aimed to make you a better teacher.
Apart from that, since you will be teaching WordPress, you need to know WordPress from a 360-degree angle. You must know all the ins and outs of WordPress so that you can do your job properly.
How To Find WordPress Jobs?
Finding jobs nowadays is a lot easier than it was some years ago. Many job listing sites have emerged over the years and have made it easy to not only find jobs but also to apply for them. Here are the job listing sites that can help you find a WordPress job:
Start a WordPress Career
Now that you have all the information you need to start a career in WordPress, you should start working on it. Make a career plan and stick to it. A good career is a combination of hard work, persistence, and determination.